Artist Bios

The Choir of St. James Cathedral

The Choir of St. James Cathedral
Vicki St. Pierre, conductor
David Briggs, organ

THE CHOIR OF ST. JAMES CATHEDRAL formerly the Cathedral Choir of Men and Boys, dates from 1898, when then-Choirmaster Dr. Albert Ham changed it in the tradition of the cathedrals of England. The now fully professional choir consists of men and women, and its repertoire embraces music from the 14th to the 21st centuries

Vicki St. Pierre - Conductor, The Choir of St. James Cathedral

Vicki St. Pierre brings 15 years’ choral conducting experience to the Cathedral Church of St. James where she leads an 18 voice professional Cathedral Choir, and a volunteer Parish Choir. Vicki is currently the Associate Artistic Director of London Pro Musica, a 45-50 voice auditioned community choir in London, Ontario. For three years, she conducted the Woodstock Fanshawe Singers, an auditioned community choir, and she spent 13 years as Music Director of Zion United Church in New Hamburg. Ms. St. Pierre has served as Assistant Conductor for many mainstage productions with Opera Atelier (Le Nozze di Figaro, Dido and Aeneas, Actéon, Iphégénie en Tauride, Orphée et Éuridice, Don Giovanni, Idomeneo, Acis and Galatea and The Magic Flute), and was Musical Director for Opera Atelier’s summer opera program for five seasons. Vicki is also the Music Director of New Hamburg Live! a week-long summer arts festival, where she runs a mass choir workshop in addition to frequent solo vocal appearances.

As a vocal soloist, Vicki has sung with the majority of excellent symphonies and choirs across Canada and in the United States, including Tafelmusik, Edmonton Symphony, Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra, Toronto Consort, Victoria Symphony, Talisker Players, Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony, Chorus Niagara, Symphony Nova Scotia, and the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir. On the operatic stage, Ms. St. Pierre has appeared in Monteverdi’s Orfeo and Il Ritorno d’Ulisse in Patria, Charpentier’s Acteon, and L’Incoronazione di Poppea with Opera Atelier, and in Dido and Aeneas with Ensembles Masques de Montreal and Toronto Masque Theatre. She has also sung opera roles with Toronto Philharmonia, Early Music Vancouver, and Cleveland Opera.

Vicki St. Pierre is a successful vocal instructor, with vocal studios in New Hamburg and Toronto; her students have graduated from many prestigious undergraduate and graduate music programs, and can be seen on concert and operatic stages around the world. Vicki has adjudicated vocal categories at festivals across Canada, including the Ontario Provincial Festival in 2012. She is sought-after for master classes in voice and early music performance at various educational centers, including the Tafelmusik Baroque Summer Institute, and the University of Western Ontario. She has been a classroom instructor at the Glenn Gould Professional School, Royal Conservatory of Music, and is completing her Doctorate of Musical Arts at the University of Toronto.

Tel: 416-364-7865 ext 234 Email: vstpierre@stjamescathedral.on.ca

David Briggs - Organ

David Briggs is an internationally renowned organist whose performances are acclaimed for their musicality, virtuosity, and ability to excite and engage audiences of all ages. With an extensive repertoire spanning five centuries, he is known across the globe for his brilliant organ transcriptions of symphonic music by composers such as Mahler, Schubert, Tchaikovsky, Elgar, Bruckner, Ravel, and Bach. Fascinated by the art of Improvisation since a child, David also frequently performs improvisations to silent films such as Phantom of the Opera, Hunchback of Notre-Dame, Nosferatu, Jeanne d’Arc, Metropolis, as well as a variety of Charlie Chaplin films.

At the age of 17, David obtained his FRCO (Fellow of the Royal College of Organists) diploma, winning all the prizes and the Silver Medal of the Worshipful Company of Musicians. From 1981-84 he was the Organ Scholar at King’s College, Cambridge University, during which time he studied organ with Jean Langlais in Paris. The first British winner of the Tournemire Prize at the St Albans International Improvisation Competition, he also won the first prize in the International Improvisation Competition at Paisley. Subsequently David held positions at Hereford, Truro and Gloucester Cathedrals. He is currently Artist-in-Residence at St James Cathedral, Toronto.

David’s schedule includes more than 60 concerts a year, spanning several continents. Deeply committed to making organ music vibrant for future generations, he enjoys giving pre-concert lectures designed to make organ music more accessible to audiences. In addition, he teaches at Cambridge (UK), frequently serves on international organ competition juries, and gives master classes at colleges and conservatories across the U.S. and Europe.

David Briggs is also a prolific composer and his works range from full scale oratorios to works for solo instruments. He has recorded a DVD, and 30 CDs, many of which include his own compositions and transcriptions.

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